Apple and IBM have entered into an exclusive partnership to capture the enterprise mobility market through a new class of business apps that will bring IBM's Big Data and analytics capabilities to the iPhone and iPad.
As part of the partnership, more than 100 industry-specific enterprise solutions (IBM MobileFirst for iOS) will be developed exclusively from the ground up. IBM cloud services optimised for iOS- including device management, security, analytics and mobile integration will also be offered.
As part of the IBM MobileFirst for iOS agreement, IBM will also sell iPhones and iPads with the industry-specific solutions to business clients worldwide.
"For the first time ever we are putting IBM's Big Data analytics at iOS users' fingertips, which opens up a large market opportunity for Apple," said Apple's CEO Tim Cook in a statement.
"Mobility, combined with the phenomena of data and cloud, is transforming business and our industry allowing people to re-imagine work, industries and professions. This alliance with Apple will build on our momentum in bringing these innovations to our clients globally, and leverages IBM's leadership in analytics, cloud, software and services," added Ginni Rometty, chairman, president and CEO, IBM.
The IBM MobileFirst for iOS Solutions will target specific industry sectors including retail, healthcare, banking, travel & transportation, telecommunications and insurance, among others, and will become available starting this fall and through 2015. It will deliver services required for an end-to-end enterprise capability, from analytics, workflow and cloud storage, to fleet-scale device management, security and integration.
In addition to on-premise software solutions, all these services will be available on Bluemix—IBM's development platform on the IBM Cloud Marketplace. IBM is also introducing IBM MobileFirst Supply and Management for device supply, activation and management services for iPhone and iPad, with leasing options.
AppleCare for Enterprise will provide IT departments and end users with 24/7 assistance from Apple's customer support group, with on-site service delivered by IBM.